Gurugram-based travel commerce startup Airblack has raised $1.5 Mn in a seed funding round from Asia-focused venture capital firm, SAIF Partners.
The funds will be used to launch its consumer product, which is currently available on an invite-only basis. The company is also looking to ramp up its traveller and influencer community features and recruitment for its core team.
Founded in 2019 by Pulkit Pujara and Videt Jaiswal, Airblack is creating an end-to-end social commerce ecosystem for modern-day travellers who like to plan and travel independently, instead of relying on packaged tours. Airblack also claims to tie into the Instagram and WhatsApp ecosystem, though it’s unclear how it uses these platforms.
The company says that its community of verified travellers and travel influencers will drive recommendations on experiences, hotels, restaurants and other sights of interest for travelling. The company claims that it has already helped more than 1000 travellers create travel itineraries through the community-led approach.
Airblack’s founders were ex-VCs at SAIF Partners and have had other entrepreneurial experience as well. About the need for a consumer-facing social travel platform such as Airblack, cofounder Videt Jaiswal said, “We saw there is a strong social need in travellers here to talk to other travellers before taking purchase decisions, and an aversion to talk to travel agents because they are not relatable to this audience. We are focused on creating a strong trust layer in this category.”
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